German opposition leaders fault Merkel-Schulz debate

Randolph Lopez
September 4, 2017

Germany will also look at imposing "real restrictions on economic contact" with Turkey, as well as possibly issuing a tougher travel warning against travel to the country, she said.

Both candidates have run lackluster campaigns so far, prompting yawns from political commentators, with Germany's respected news weekly Der Spiegel depicting Merkel on its front page Saturday asleep in a boxing ring, with a tiny Schulz standing timidly behind her and the headline "Wake up!"

On the hot-button topic of migration, he accused Merkel of failing to coordinate plans with European Union neighbours when she chose to open Germany's borders in 2015 to allow in refugees, many from war-torn Syria and Iraq. A similar coalition governed germany from 2009 to 2013.

In a debate that covered a range of topics - but was notable for its absences, including Brexit, Russia and the future of the euro - Schulz repeatedly argued he would have done what Merkel did, just more successfully.

Schulz, a former European Parliament president, has a big gap to close if he is to oust Merkel as chancellor.

Earlier in the year Merkel had faced major questions over whether she would be able to survive a two-pronged assault, with Schulz attacking from the left even as she confronted a vigorous challenge from her right flank in the form of the upstart Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.

Much of the debate was taken up with the issue of migrants, with Merkel saying she stood by her decision to allow hundreds of thousands of refugees into Germany in 2015 and insisted the country can't isolate itself from the effects of wars and poverty elsewhere in the world.

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On the economy, Schulz called for a fairer system.

"Merkel came out as sure, Schulz was hardly able to land a punch".

The televised debate brought to life an election that has until now seemed little more than a victory procession for Mrs Merkel.

"There are situations were we have to follow our fundamental principles and still fight for every vote", Merkel said. He said neither leader spoke about climate protection or education, or said much about the impact of technological development.

"I'll speak to my Europen Union colleagues to see if we can reach a joint position on this so that we can end these accession talks", added Merkel, who is hoping to get re-elected for a fourth term.

No one asked her how.

Other reports by GlobalViralNews

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